Chiefs Fall to Broncos 29-16 from The Associated Press via The Mothership
Alex Smithhad 153 yards passing and two touchdowns for the Chiefs (7-5), the second of them to Jamaal Charlesto make it 26-16 early in the fourth quarter. But Smith's pass on the two-point try fell incomplete, and the Broncos added another field goal to put the game away.
Smith was sacked six times and Denver held Kansas City to 151 yards of total offense.
"There's really not a phase I can point to that was a positive in this game," Chiefs coach Andy Reid said. "We all have to do better. We're all in it together."
It certainly wasn't the kind of performance expected of the Chiefs, who emerged in a frenzy before the game wearing all-red uniforms for the third time in franchise history.
Chiefs vs. Broncos: 10 Observations from The Mothership
1. Broncos started exactly the way they wanted
After the Chiefs offense started the game with three straight passes from quarterback Alex Smith that led to a three-and-out, the Broncos offense responded by driving 74 yards on eight plays and finished with a 23-yard touchdown pass from Peyton Manning to receiver Demaryius Thomas.
It was exactly the way the Broncos wanted to start the game in Arrowhead Stadium.
Chiefs Honor Eric Berry vs. Broncos from The Mothership
At the urging of the players and with the blessing of CEO and Chairman Clark Hunt and coach Andy Reid, the Chiefs will be wearing the popular red-on-red uniforms once again Sunday night...
...Besides donning red on red, Chiefs players, led by veteran safety
Kurt Coleman, along with the help of the players committee and veteran leaders Alex Smithand Justin Houston, designed a T-shirt honoring Berry.
"Be Bold, Be Brave, Be Berry."
Chiefs vs. Broncos: Postgame Facts and Stats from The Mothership
RUSHING TDs: Kansas City has allowed just two rushing touchdowns in 2014, which ranks as the best mark in franchise history. The current mark for fewest rushing touchdowns allowed in a season is six, which was set in 1969 and 1971 during two 14-game regular season schedules. In 2013, the Chiefs allowed just seven rushing touchdowns, tied for the second-best mark in franchise history at the time. In the past two seasons, the Chiefs have allowed only nine rushing touchdowns.
Chiefs vs. Broncos: Andy Reid Postgame Press Conference from The Mothership
What are your first impressions on what your offensive struggles were? "Well, I'd look at myself first. I'm calling the plays. So was I giving the players an opportunity to make plays? Then I'll go back and look and see if we were executing properly."
When you're standing there watching the first quarter does it befuddle you as to how the score can be 14-0 after all that hard work? "Yeah, listen they got us, that's what I can tell you. I probably didn't go there but they got us today. They did a heck of a job coaching and they were better than we were today."
Chiefs vs. Broncos: Alex Smith Postgame Press Conference from The Mothership
How surprising is that? 10 days from the last game coming into this one and this is two straight weeks and two straight games that the Chiefs have started out slow offensively. How surprising is that? "Yeah, a little bit of a check for sure for all of us. Really felt like the last two weeks were uncharacteristic of who we are as a team and it'll be a little bit of that a little bit of a gut check time. There's still a lot of football left, a lot of meaningful football left for us. It's going to be a matter of what we do with it. A little bit like the start of the season I think."
Was the energy and enthusiasm there? "Yeah for sure. I don't think it was a lack of energy at all. I certainly think there were a lot of things. Execution and focus for sure. Couple of tough breaks as well, some of the turnovers, they hurt us."
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KCChiefs.com Video: Chiefs vs. Broncos: Game Highlights
Denver completes season sweep of Chiefs in dominating fashion from Chiefs Digest
Three straight three-and-outs set the table for the Chiefs second straight poor showing on national television.
Wide receiver Donnie Avery's fourth-quarter fumble, the Chiefs' third turnover of the game, with 3:55 left on the clock culminated a 29-16 Denver win.
Denver (9-3) showed up in the Sunday Night Football matchup with 388 total yards of offense compared to the Chiefs' (7-5) 151 yards.
Chiefs' Smith wasn't the problem, but he hardly helped matters from FS Kansas City
No one is pointing any fingers at Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith.
There certainly was plenty of blame to go around in the Chiefs' discouraging 29-16 loss to Denver on Sunday night, such as the porous run defense (214 yards), the poor special teams play (a lost fumble, a fake-punt-for-a-first-down allowed) and so on.
Still, Smith didn't really help matters with a sub-par game that was somewhat camouflaged by less-than-hideous numbers (15 of 23, 153 yards, 95.0 passer rating).
When the game mattered most and the Chiefs needed Smith to rally the troops, he shot blanks.
Rapid Reaction: Kansas City Chiefs from ESPN
What it means: The Chiefs fell to 7-5, and any realistic chance of winning the AFC West disappeared with the defeat. The Chiefs are two games behind the Broncos (9-3). Denver won both of this season's games against Kansas City, which gives it the tiebreaker against the Chiefs, so the Chiefs are the equivalent of two-and-a-half games behind the Broncos with four left to play. If the Chiefs are going to make the playoffs, it will have to be as a wild-card entrant.
All facets of Chiefs game highlighted in Week 13 lows from Chiefs Digest
The Chiefs offensive line didn't do Smith any favors. Smith was sacked six times for a loss of 43 yards on the night. He was sacked for more yards than the Chiefs had rushing yards (41).
The Chiefs had 44 plays from scrimmage. The Broncos nearly doubled that with 80 plays. One contributing factor to that was the Chiefs third down efficiency. The Chiefs were 1-of-9 for 11 percent on third down.
Overrated? Maybe the Chiefs' 7-3 start was fool's gold after all from FS Kansas City
Denver's Broncos held a mirror up to the Kansas City Chiefs, then splashed cold water on their face in front of Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth and all the free world to see.
Nice team. Gamers. Scrappers. A family, in the truest football sense.
Not a serious Super Bowl contender, let alone the biggest dog in the AFC West.
That 7-3 was not the fool's gold that 9-0 was, but it was fool's gold nonetheless.
Participants, some of whom wore jerseys with Berry's No. 29, swabbed their cheek to find out if they're potential donors for anyone who needs a bone marrow transplant.
While it's uncertain whether Berry will need a transplant, Chiefs fans said they'll be ready if he does...
...Fans said they hope that more awareness about the need for donors will come out of Berry's situation.
The Chiefs said that a more definitive diagnosis for Berry could be available this week. In his statement after announcing his diagnosis...
Broncos dominate Chiefs behind big game from C.J. Anderson, defense from The Denver Post
The Broncos' once-precarious hold on the AFC West felt stronger, the grip tight. Their 9-3 record leaves them ahead of the San Diego Chargers (8-4), and the Chiefs' title hopes (7-5) are all but buried.
As Manning huddled the Broncos with five minutes remaining before a nearly empty stadium, a thought began to crystallize: Perhaps the critics are psychoanalyzing the wrong quarterback.
For the first time since he joined the Broncos in 2012, the Broncos won without him playing his best. He finished 17-for-34 for 179 yards.
Chairman Clark Hunt and quarterback Alex Smith appeared to be having a heart-to-heart. Their discussion ended with Hunt telling Smith, "Keep your head up."
Broncos-Chiefs: What we learned from Lindy's Sports
The Denver Broncos are Peyton Manning's team, or at least they used to be. For the Broncos to win over the last three seasons, they relied on Manning and his ability to distribute the football in the passing game.
However, in a 29-16 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday night at Arrowhead Stadium, the Broncos showed they are not locked into relying on their future Hall of Fame quarterback. The key in the Broncos' ninth victory of the season was their running game: 214 yards on 45 carries, including 168 yards from second-year running back C.J. Anderson.
This seemed to be the Kansas City Chiefs' best chance to beat Peyton Manning since he joined the Denver Broncos, but we now know that was just a mirage, a tease, a cruel parlor trick.
The Chiefs never have a good chance to beat Manning, whether he plays for the Broncos orIndianapolis Colts. They are 1-13 all-time against Manning after Sunday night's 29-16 loss and 0-6 since he joined the Broncos in 2012.
The Chiefs fell behind 17-0 this time, which signaled this would be another in a long series of lopsided losses to teams quarterbacked by Manning.